IP-SoC 18 Grenoble – analog process migration emerges as key issue

The IP SoC Grenoble Conference & Exhibition is a yearly get-together of some of the leading minds in semiconductor IP, related applications and ecosystems, in Europe. Executives from different companies, large players, SMEs and startups, meet for two days of presentations, discussions and panels. The 2018 edition, which took place during the first week of December, was attended by around 150 visitors and 20 exhibitors.

One of the most interesting presentations came from TSMC, and was entitled “Designing with TSMC Open Innovation Platform (OIP) Ecosystem”.

The company presented a number of advanced technology highlights including 22ULP/ULL. This new technology is actually a shrink of the 28nm technology. Overall the technology offers 10% die size shrink, 10% performance improvement, 20% power reduction and RF enhancement over 28HPC+. It has been adopted by consumer, 5G mmWave and mainstream RF applications.

Both 22ULP and 22ULL can serve numerous market segments, including: application processor and baseband SoCs, STB, DTV, mmWave RF, mmWave car radar, WLAN (WiFi, Bluetooth LE, etc), GPS, GNSS, flash controller, MCU, audio and IoT.

Many companies are currently launching new SoC designs using TSMC 22nm process nodes, and IP assets need to be consolidated and redesigned to these new processes and nodes. It was therefore timely that Thalia’s presentation at the conference focused on how such process migration can be made easier and more efficient.

Our CTO, Sowmyan Rajagopalan, outlined how our AMALIA design automation technology, combined with in-house analog design expertise and design methodology, offers a simple way to deploy a large portfolio of analog, mixed-signal and RF IP in a very quick turn-around-time.

Sowmyan showed some specific examples of analog migration projects, based on our real-world experience with customers. These included both individual blocks such as PLLs, and complete analog IPs, such as WiFi or Bluetooth front end designs.

It’s worth also noting that the very same approach can also help with generation of product variants and design enablement, allowing customers not only to gain the benefits of new processes and nodes, but also to diversify their product range quickly and easily.